Ortega, Daniel

▪ 2007
 Daniel Ortega of the leftist Sandinista National Liberation Front (FSLN), who had served as Nicaragua's president from 1984 to 1990, was on Nov. 5, 2006, again elected to the top post. Ortega's 2006 presidential campaign, which was managed by his wife, Rosario Murillo, used the slogan “Peace, jobs, and reconciliation.” During the campaign Ortega backed a law to outlaw abortion under any circumstances, apologized for his “excesses” during the 1980s, promised to uphold international financial and trade agreements, and vowed not to engage in war. He was also given considerable support by Venezuelan Pres. Hugo Chávez.

      José Daniel Ortega Saavedra was born on Nov. 11, 1945, in La Libertad, Chontales, Nic. He studied law briefly (1962) at the Central American University in Managua. In 1963 Ortega joined the FSLN and its struggle to overthrow the dictatorship of Anastasio Somoza Debayle. In his 20s Ortega became a leader of the group's urban guerrilla front, but he was arrested in 1967. He was released in 1974 as part of a prisoner swap, in which he was exchanged for kidnapped Somoza collaborators and diplomats. After a year in Cuba, he returned to Nicaragua to lead the northern and southern fronts. On July 17, 1979, the 46-year rule of the Somoza family came to an end when Somoza resigned and fled the country. Two days later, Ortega headed a government of national reconstruction.

      The Sandinista revolution (1979–90) received recognition at home and internationally for its health and education policies, the promulgation of a new constitution (1987), a partial land reform, and its international nonalignment. Some rejected the regime, however, owing to its crackdowns on civil liberties, nationalization of some industries, and support from the Soviet bloc. Beginning in 1981, the U.S. administration sought to secure the downfall of the Sandinista regime by providing substantial financial and military aid for the opposition counterrevolutionary (Contra) forces and imposing an economic embargo.

      The Contra war and the worsening economy contributed to Ortega's defeat in the 1990 elections. From 1991 he served as the elected head of the FSLN. In 1996 and 2001 he ran unsuccessfully as the FSLN presidential candidate, but as runner-up he was entitled to a National Assembly seat and remained influential. Allegations of sexual abuse by his stepdaughter, Zoilamérica Narváez Murillo, tarnished his reputation, however. Nonetheless, Ortega continued to exert his political muscle, and in 1999 he made a power-sharing pact with then president Arnoldo Alemán. The accord gave Ortega partial control of key state institutions and continued to influence national politics during the tenure of Enrique Bolaños (2002–07). Though the U.S. government undertook several unsuccessful measures to prevent Ortega's victory, it agreed to work with the new government when it was installed in January 2007.

Nadine Jubb

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▪ president of Nicaragua
in full  José Daniel Ortega Saavedra 
born Nov. 11, 1945, La Libertad, Nic.
 Nicaraguan guerrilla leader, member of the Sandinista junta that took power in 1979, and the elected president of Nicaragua from November 1984 to April 1990 and again from January 2007.

      Son of a veteran of the peasant army of César Augusto Sandino (Sandino, César Augusto), Ortega moved with his family to Managua in the mid-1950s. He briefly attended the Central American University in Managua, then in 1963 he went underground and became a member of the Sandinista National Liberation Front (FSLN). By 1967 he was in charge of the FSLN's urban resistance campaign against the ruling Somoza family.

      In the fall of 1967 Ortega was arrested for his part in a bank robbery and spent the next seven years in jail. He and a number of other Sandinista prisoners were released at the end of 1974 in exchange for high-level Somocista hostages. Ortega, with the other released prisoners, was exiled to Cuba, where he received several months of guerrilla training. After secretly returning to Nicaragua, Ortega played a major role in the conciliation of various FSLN factions and in the formation of alliances with business and political groups. This policy gradually turned the guerrilla campaign into a full-fledged civil war and led to the Sandinista victory in 1979.

      One of the five members of the Sandinista junta, Ortega was named coordinator of the junta in 1981 and three years later was elected president of Nicaragua. He was defeated in his bid for reelection in 1990 by Violeta Barrios de Chamorro (Chamorro, Violeta Barrios de), the candidate of the National Opposition Union. Chamorro's term expired in 1996. Ortega reemerged as the FSLN candidate for president in May 1996 but was defeated in the October elections by conservative candidate Arnoldo Alemán Lacayo. Ortega was also the FSLN candidate for president in 2001, and although he was defeated, he captured 42 percent of the vote.

      Ortega remained influential in Nicaraguan politics, and in 2006 he once again ran for president as the FSLN's candidate. With strong support among Nicaragua's poor, he secured a large enough plurality to defeat conservative candidate Eduardo Montealegre. After his victory, Ortega stated that he would maintain the economic policies enacted since he left office, including the privatization of formerly state-owned businesses and a free-trade agreement with the United States. He also vowed to uphold civil liberties.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Ortega,Daniel — Or·te·ga (ôr tāʹgə, tĕʹgä), Daniel. Born 1945. Nicaraguan revolutionary leader and politician. He helped establish the Government of National Reconstruction after the overthrow of the Somoza regime (1979) and later served as president (1984 1990) …   Universalium

  • Ortega, Daniel — ► (n. 1948) Político y militar nicaragüense. Es secretario general del Frente Sandinista de Liberación Nacional. Fue presidente de la República en 1984 90 …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Daniel Ortega — in 2008 President of Nicaragua Incumbent Assumed office 10 …   Wikipedia

  • Daniel Ortega — Presidente de la República de Nicaragua 10 de enero de 2007 – 10 de enero de 2012 …   Wikipedia Español

  • Daniel José Ortega Saavedra — Daniel Ortega Pour les articles homonymes, voir Ortega. Daniel Ortega …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Daniel Ortega Saavedra — Daniel Ortega Pour les articles homonymes, voir Ortega. Daniel Ortega …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Daniel Ortega Saavedra — Daniel Ortega 2007 Daniel Ortega Saavedra (* 11. November 1945 in La Libertad, Chontales) war von 1985 bis 1990 Präsident von Nicaragua und ist Vorsitzender der Frente Sandinista de Liberación Nacional (FSLN). Am 5. November 2006 wurde Ortega… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Ortega — (Daniel) (né en 1945) homme politique nicaraguayen. Un des dirigeants du Front sandiniste; chef de l état de 1984 à 1990 …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Daniel Ortega — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Ortega. Daniel Ortega 220px Daniel Ortega le 10 novembre 2010. Mandats …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Daniel Ortega — noun Nicaraguan statesman (born in 1945) • Syn: ↑Ortega, ↑Daniel Ortega Saavedra • Instance Hypernyms: ↑statesman, ↑solon, ↑national leader …   Useful english dictionary

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